Eczema treatment - allergies, urticaria, hay fever

Eczema is a common dermatological condition at our dermatology clinic Dermatologist Bern Bubenberg. This includes care for patients with atopic eczema (neurodermatitis). Occupational skin diseases (occupational eczema), in particular contact eczema, must also be clarified and assessed in detail. In addition to a detailed discussion of the various treatment modalities by the Dermatologist Dr. Urs Büttiker, MD, the corresponding behavioral measures such as skin care and skin protection measures are also discussed.

By allergy we mean an acquired immunologically induced (caused by the immune system) hypersensitivity reaction, which is due to exogenous substances (supplied from outside). In addition to the type I reaction (hay fever, asthma, food, insect venom allergy and occasionally worsening neurodermatitis), we distinguish a type IV reaction (contact eczema, drug exanthema). Depending on the findings and anamnesis (medical history), one or the other type of reaction can be identified. The clarifications are based on the type of allergy diagnosed.

  • Eczema treatment
  • Neurodermatitis consultation
  • Hay fever clarification
  • Desensitization treatment (injection cure with gradual habituation of the immune system to the allergen)
  • Light therapy
  • Allergy and eczema testing using various (skin) tests (see below)

For this purpose, allergological skin tests with a wide range of test substances (allergens) are used in our dermatology practice in Bern Bubenberg: prick test, scratch test, intradermat test and epicutaneous test (patch test), atopy patch test and provocation test. In addition, blood tests (determination of total IgE and specific IgE) can be carried out, particularly in cases of suspected hay fever, asthma, food allergies and medication (lymphocyte transformation test).

Prick test and scratch test

The prick test provides information on the presence of sensitization to immediate-type allergens such as pollen, animal dander, house dust mites, moulds, food or latex. These environmental allergens can trigger symptoms on the skin and in the airways (allergic rhinitis, bronchial asthma).

After applying the allergen extracts to the forearm, the skin is lightly scratched. A positive reaction results in redness and swelling (wheal). The reading is taken after 20 minutes. The prick test can be influenced by medication. Antihistamines (Xyzal, Zyrtec, Aerius, Telfast, Fenistil, Atarax, ...) must therefore be discontinued for at least 3 days, corticosteroids 3 days for short-term therapy, 3 weeks for long-term therapy before the prick test.

Epicutaneous test

An epicutaneous test (patch test) is carried out if a contact allergy (type IV allergies) is suspected. Depending on the patient's medical history, contact substances such as metals, fragrances, rubber components, preservatives, plant ingredients, etc. are tested. Materials brought in by the patient, for example occupational substances, are tested after consultation and preparation. They must be brought to the first test appointment.

The epicutaneous test corresponds to a provocation test with defined substances. The test patches are stuck to the back and remain there for 2 days (48 hours). The test reaction is read after 48 and 72 hours. The test area on the back should be free of skin symptoms and should not have been treated with corticosteroids or care products beforehand.

Atopy patch test

The Atopy Patch Test assesses the skin's reaction to environmental allergens such as pollen, animal dander, house dust mites or molds. It is used to identify triggers of atopic eczema (neurodermatitis). It is carried out in the same way as the epicutaneous test.

Other tests

Cold, heat, pressure and sweat test to clarify chronic urticaria (hives) and to test dermographism
Photo patch testing for suspected phototoxic or allergic reactions (triggered by sunlight)

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